Dance) for this African-American take on a holiday classic. Here, Clara is a widowed grandmother living"/>

THE HARLEM NUTCRACKER

Susan Kuklin, Author, Donald Byrd, Author, Jump at the Sun, Author . Hyperion/Jump at the Sun $19.99 (48p) ISBN 978-0-7868-0633-1

Choreographer Byrd collaborates with photographer Kuklin (Dance) for this African-American take on a holiday classic. Here, Clara is a widowed grandmother living in Harlem, and a family feud breaks out on Christmas Eve. When Death pays a call, Clara fends him off with her nutcracker (her late husband, Gus). Clara reviews her life, à la Scrooge, then comes a family reconciliation and, after Clara passes the nutcracker on to her grandson, she surrenders to Death. Although the volume celebrates the importance of cultural and family ties, the narrative meanders (e.g., "Everyone liked the Dominicans because they were kind and they were fun") and the photos are uncharacteristically grainy. Ages 8-up. (Sept.)

Reviewed on: 09/24/2001
Release date: 09/01/2001
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